In today's episode, I want to show you how to make sure your ads are being shown to the right people at the right time to help increase your revenue and your profits.
As always, if you have any questions and suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment below.
What's Covered in This Episode:
Sources to get more traffic
Links From This Episode:
What's up everybody Anton Kraly here and welcome back to the eCommerce Lifestyle Podcast. This is the show that helps eCommerce store owners increase their revenue, automate their operations and become the authority in their niche. And specifically in today's episode, I want to show you how to make sure that your ads are being shown to the right people at the right time so that you can find the easiest money there is to make and increase your revenue and your profits. And this should apply to you whether you're already up and running and making a bunch of money or you're just getting started and you're on the side guideline and thinking about, "Well, when I get into this who should I show my ads to? How should I do it and where is the easy money?"
And I say this can apply to everybody because I actually learned that this the hard way. I figured this out after years in business of spending a ton of money on ads doing it profitably but not realizing where the money actually was. And it's funny as I was thinking of this episode, I was thinking of back 10 years ago probably in my life, probably even more than that, wow. In 2007, right? That's crazy, it was so long ago. I graduated from college in 2006 and after college I moved to Long Beach in New York. Pretty close to where I grew up but cool, little fun beach town, a bunch of bars, awesome beach, awesome boardwalk.
And one of the things I used to like to do when I was living there is go down to the beach early in the morning and go surf casting. I still have it but a huge fishing pole, take it down there and try to catch some striped bass. I was one of the guys you see standing down with their feet in the water casting out as far as they can. And I would do this a lot just as something to do, get out of the house. And it's funny because I enjoyed it, but I almost never caught anything.
I would get like a couple striped bass every once in a while but most of the time I was just relaxing, enjoying the beach and casting out, right? Now a few years after that, a bunch of my buddies and me decided we should go on a fishing trip. We decided we would go down to Key West, party/fishing and we chartered a boat and went out fishing for hammerhead sharks which sounds scary but was actually a lot of fun. So we get on this boat, we're maybe a couple miles off shore barely and we're just going over. The water is crystal clear down there but we're going over these massive pools of hammerheads.
And we cast out and we basically got one right away. And just for anybody listening that's like, "Oh, that's terrible." It was catch and release so don't worry we were not there to try to kill anything. But yeah, I just realized like, "Wow, we just caught this gigantic eight and a half foot long hammerhead shark." And it took a long time to reel it in but it was just right there, it was right under us compared to me spending all of these mornings in Long Beach casting out barely bringing in anything in.
Fast forward a few years after that I was thinking of living in Central America, so I was down in Costa Rica for a couple of months. And one day I was like, "Oh, I want to go fishing." We chartered a boat out there, we went out maybe 15, 20 minutes and there were more fish than I've ever seen in my life. We were catching sailfish, blue fish, these huge Yellowfin tuna. And they would bite basically as soon as you cast out, right? We were on top of, I don't know what you call it, the motherlode, we were on top of every fish, colorful, huge, just beautiful that you could ever imagine.
Again, don't worry, same thing, catch and release. But I was just thinking back too again when I was out there like, "Wow, this is 10 times easier than it was to try to catch fish, even when we were catching sharks and this is a thousand times easier, this is infinitely easier than when we were trying to catch fish or when I was trying to catch fish, just surf-casting back in Long Beach.
And that is the overarching theme here, right? When it comes to finding buyers in your business, especially when you're putting yourself out there and running paid ads, it's almost exactly like this. You want to find where the fish are, right? Where are your dream customers? Where are the people that you can just put your bait out there, meaning your ads, and have them just flock to it and just be overwhelmed?
And when I got started with eCommerce, this was, I think it was late 2007 when I had built my first store, I was running ads and I was basically doing media buying. But when I was doing it back then I was all over the place. What I was doing is buying ads on... And this is specifically with display ads. Picture a banner image with some text or maybe a few sentences underneath for some copy, some words to try to direct people to my stores. And I knew that I can spend money and get website visitors so that was my mentality back then like, "How many places could I do this?"
Back then I was buying a ton of ads on Google Display Network, I was buying ads on all different blogs and websites that I could find that offered ad space. I was even doing some offline stuff. I was buying ads in traditional print magazines, even sponsoring some TV shows, sending them products, sometimes sending money in and then having our name roll in the credits. By the way I don't recommend that. What that was good for was getting the TV shows logos and the networks logos on our store for an as-seen-on section, but for a direct return on money spent, no, it didn't work.
Basically though I was throwing all this money up in the air, doing it at a great return on ad spend so overall I'm making a bunch of money. But back then I was terrible at tracking sales and I did not fully understand where all this money coming into the business was coming from. I knew it was from paid ads and from advertising efforts but I didn't know which traffic sources were getting me the results that I got when I was surf casting in Long Beach, and I definitely didn't know which different traffic sources and which different ads were getting me the results that came from when I was surf casting in Costa Rica. Where was the money?
I finally, literally after years of doing this, figured out how to track eCommerce sales properly. And that's a story and maybe an episode for another day because that was a process in itself. But once I started doing that I almost immediately realized that almost all of our sales were coming from a few sources. And by tracking properly, basically what I did was find our fishing hotspots and I found the money.
And what was really interesting to me is the money and the sales and the profits, they were not coming from the traffic channels that we were spending most of our ad spend on and they were definitely not coming from the traffic channels that were sending us the most website visitors, the most traffic, the ones that were inflating, our website visitor counter. The most sales and the most profit was coming from the traffic sources that sent us the most targeted customers and more importantly, that sent us the most qualified website visitors.
I want you to take that away and I want to give you some, I guess, examples of what to look for as you're buying ads so you can get the same type of results that we've been getting since we fixed this back in, I don't even know, probably 2009, 2010. One example was that niche blogs that were sending us traffic again had a ton of these back in the day, but the ones that were making the money, the ones where the money was were the ones that were actually recommending us on their blogs instead of just linking to us.
Instead of just having a little image of one of our products in the sidebar, they would have that and they would say something like, "Our preferred partner." Or, "If you want to buy X," then they would have their company name recommends X. It was an endorsement rather than just a random link. That made a huge difference and that was something that we paid attention to ever since. Instead of just having a little ad on the side, try to get that endorsement and try to get that referral instead of just a link like everybody else.
Now, another big one that really stood out to me, this was one of our hotspots and still is, is trade publications and associations that listed us as a resource. Whatever you are selling, if you can find any of these publications or associations, try to see what you have to do to work with them, try to provide value to them, see if you can pay them, but try to get so you can be listed as a resource in their directories. I'll give you an example, this is not something I've ever sold, but let's just say you had a, the store, an online store and you sold some type of maybe, I don't know, auto repair part or some type of a product that was imported for people that were in the automotive repair space.
If I did that, I would try to find different trade schools for automotive jobs. I would try to find different associations that people in that industry are part of once they're certified and out there working in the real world. And I would try to be able to partner with them and have again, links to our store, be hopefully endorsed by them or at the very least be listed in their resource section on their website, or maybe even in their printed publications, or maybe even in their classrooms.
Now, something else that has worked extremely well is when we have influencers, this can be a person or this can be a blog or a podcast or a YouTube channel, whatever, but an influencer who has passionate followings that is sending us traffic, instead of just having an ad on a random blog or website that gets a ton of traffic but that's coming through Clickbait posts. I would much rather have a person with much less traffic but a person that has traffic and website visitors that trust them and that listens to what they say, endorse me versus one of these massive conglomerate sites where the visitors can care less about who that website endorses or recommends.
And I should say, obviously this is a podcast and the purpose of the eCommerce Lifestyle Podcast here is for me to get my ideas and thoughts and strategies out there to you quickly. But if you are a member of Drop Ship Lifestyle, my coaching program, I teach this entire process in detail in Lesson 6.4 of the Drop Ship Blueprint. This lesson is called Transferred Influence, and it's actually a 47-minute lecture and it shows you exactly how this is done from A to Z. If you are a member of Drop Ship Lifestyle, I'm going to link in the podcast description exactly to where this lecture is in the members area. And if you're not a member yet, what are you waiting for? Sign up and get this in addition to all the other trainings we have, it's a great way to again find where that money is.
The main takeaway I really want you to get from this whole, I don't know, episode, this whole brain dump of what I've had in my mind is that when you are running paid ads with partners that already have your dream customers, you're going to make more money. It's cheaper, again you're going to earn more and something we've found too is the people that buy from this type of partner they're going to become a loyal customer base. Instead of just that one-off purchase, these are really your dream customers that not only will come back and buy again and again and again, but they'll refer people to your company and they'll be with you for the long-term, of course, as long as you treat them right which obviously is a main focus of why our store succeeded.
With that being said, take away the tips from this. If you're a member of Drop Ship Lifestyle, watch that lesson, I'll link up in the description. And also basically just as importantly, make sure that you are tracking sales properly so as you do this you can tell what is working, you can tell what is not working. You can find your Costa Rica fishing hotspots instead of the Long Beach beach with a surf casting pole and hundreds of hours spent with not many a striped bass in the end.
Don't make this harder on yourself than it has to be because there really are ways to make real money with eCommerce and you do not have to drain yourself physically and emotionally going on this roller coaster of, "Am I profitable, am I not? What's working, what's not?" And one of the simplest ways to do that is to just go to where the money already is, go to where your dream customers already are and follow this proven system.
Now, if you want more ways to simply grow a highly profitable semi-automated store, be sure to visit dropshipwebinar.com, I'll link that up in the description as well. You'll get a free training from me there on how we build these businesses and as a bonus I'll also give you a list of 237 profitable products to sell online.
That's it for today guys, I hope you got value. If you did I would really appreciate it. If you can leave a review for the podcast on Apple Podcasts, that means a lot and make sure you're subscribed if you're not already. We release two new episodes every week every Monday and Thursday, and they're all designed to be just like this, to give you information that will help you increase your revenue, automate your operations and become the authority in your niche. Thanks again, I appreciate you and I will talk to you in the next one. Have a great week, everybody.